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Journal Article

Citation

de Wit PAJM, Moraes Cruz R. Safety Sci. 2019; 112: 48-56.

Copyright

(Copyright © 2019, Elsevier Publishing)

DOI

10.1016/j.ssci.2018.10.009

PMID

unavailable

Abstract

Recovered flight data and voice recordings indicate that the crash of Air France flight 447 in 2009 was caused by a combination of human error, degradation of flight automation, lack of clear information available to the flight crew and suboptimal teamwork. This article reviews insights from the main AF447 accident analyses on the basis of the theory of affordance and in the context of the system-approach to risk. Despite the availability of clear recovery procedures, in the ergonomic design of an Airbus a degradation in flight automation requires increased human cognitive input. Yet, under stress the human ability to access higher cognitive resources is significantly reduced. When startled, humans require direct perceptual clues to understand what is happening. In AF447 such clues were not available while the initial incident escalated into an accident. The implications of these observations for pilot training and for transport automation design are explored.


Language: en

Keywords

Affordance; Air France flight 447; Ergonomic design; Orienting response; Startle response; System approach to risk

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